Construction of a
15 Foot Wooden Sailing Dinghy
Here she is all rigged but still
waiting to hit the water.
This web page is in thanks to the many other people who have generously published their trials and tribulations on home boat building. I have perused many and learned a great deal.
It is my intention to retire on a sailboat that I build; with my beautiful and most understanding wife, spending the rest of our days sailing the world. Though a daunting dream it is one that has been realized by many and I intend to be one more. I am approaching 40 now and though I have many years to retirement, there are a few things that I can do now that will help this dream along and bring it inches closer to reality. Two things that I have chosen to address are the fact that 1) I do not know how to build a boat, and 2) I do not know how to sail. The internet has many boat plan sites to choose where a sane and rational person can find a boat that tickles their fancy and get a comprehensive and proven set of plans that will all but assure a fine little sailboat. Being neither sane nor rational I have decided that I will design my own boat. Having never built one nor sailed are all the qualifications I need. I am fully aware that this is a complex project and not one to be taken lightly. I will therefore used the proven methodology of project management I call "make it up as I go along". With this background and a rock solid plan I know I can not fail.
I am almost 40 with a wonderful wife and teenage son. A temporary layoff from my work has given me the time to persue this project. I live near St. Thomas Ontario Canada which is a stone throw from the largest fresh water lakes in the world. As such You would expect it to be a sailing mecca but it seems not to be the case. Though some sailboats reside in the local marinas, small trailerable sailboats are a very rare sight. Before deciding to build my own, my search for a decent little boat was a total wash. My budget is tight and getting tighter as my temporary layoff now appears to be permanent. 2 1/2 years to find a decent job and now got to start the search again, SHIT!
I wanted the smallest boat that would accomodate my wife, son, and myself with enough room for another couple. I determined a length of 15 ft. and a beam of 6 ft. I chose a daggerboard for simplicity. The cockpit would be long, over 9 feet with a small storage compartment in the bow. I also want to include a battery compartment under the sole to power the trolling motor that would safely return us to shore after spending a couple beautiful hours "in irons" unable to sail anywhere.
A Side Note
Although I write in a self depreciating and firmly tongue in cheek style, I am prepared to accept the boat in whatever condition or abilities it is capable of. The primary purpose of this build is experience and education. This web page is mearly a documentation of what I have done and in no way promotes what or how I have done anything. I would be horrified to think that anyone has attempted to duplicate this folly.